The Late 5: PDP demands arrest of Miyetti Allah chairman within 24 hours, Buhari can override NASS on election budget – Prof Sagay | More stories

These are the stories that drove the conversation today:

The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) has called for the arrest and prosecution of leaders of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association (MACBAN), over comments credited to its member on plot to forcefully remove the Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki.

In a statement issued by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan on Wednesday in Abuja, the PDP said such “unguarded statement” echoed the threats by the leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and “agents of the Buhari Presidency,” to force Saraki out of office, describing it “ominous and revealing.”

The PDP also alleged that his statement has exposed the synergy between the APC and some “troublesome elements” who are being used to stoke division and create violent crisis that had resulted into daily bloodlettings in various parts of the country.

“In the light of these treasonable and inciting utterances by Miyetti Allah, we demand that President Muhammadu Buhari, should within the next 24 hours, order the arrest and commence immediate trial of the leadership of this group, otherwise Nigerians will henceforth hold him directly responsible for the utterances and actions of the Miyetti Allah.

Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee against Corruption (PACAC), Prof Itse Sagay (SAN) has said the Federal Government could override the National Assembly to fund the 2019 general election by invoking the doctrine of necessity, should it fail to pass the budget for the polls.

In a statement, on Wednesday, Sagay noted that should elections not hold, it will mean the collapse of the country’s democracy, leading to chaos and anarchy, explaining that the overriding necessity and imperative of elections and democracy simply override the power of National Assembly.

“If the National Assembly refuses or fails to approve the budget for election, the doctrine of necessity will validate the provision of the funds without the National Assembly’s approval,” he added.

The National Leadership of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association (MACBAN) has on Wednesday, dissociated itself from comments by its State Coordinator for Benue, Garus Gololo warning the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, to resign or be forced to do so.

A statement signed by its Secretary, Othman Ngelzarma, said Gololo’s comments do not reflect the position of the association as he does not have the mandate to speak on behalf of the association and will be sanctioned accordingly.

“Miyetti Allah is a non partisan association with no interest in the political terrain and we couldn’t meddle into the affairs of political actors thereby compounding our already obvious challenges. I therefore urge all and sundry to disregard this statement.

This statement is not from MACBAN and should be disregarded in its entirety,” the statement read.

President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday expressed the belief that Nigeria will never again be a byword for corruption and plundering of public resources.

According to a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, the President said this while commending two security men who returned a handbag filled with valuables forgotten by an American returnee at the Murtala Muhammed Airport, adding that despite the scoffing of a minority number, Nigeria is resolutely on the road to a new dawn.

“The security men could have chosen to behave differently, following the self-serving principle of ‘if you can’t beat them, join them.’ But they have chosen to be examples of good, honest Nigerians. I commend their conduct to the rest of the country,” he added.

Irate youth numbering about 20, in Imo on Wednesday set ablaze a Magistrate Court in Orlu, with the fire reportedly destroying documents in the court before it could be put out.

Public Relations Officer of the Imo Police Command, Andrew Enwerem, who confirmed the incident said the cause of the arson was yet been to be ascertained as investigations are ongoing.

He however denied claims that the action was connected to the recent arrest of more than 100 members of the women wing of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), who embarked on a peaceful protest recently but were teargassed, arrested and subsequently charged for treasonable felony.

And stories from around the world:

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday called US sanctions against Moscow “counterproductive and senseless” after Washington warned that more “economic pain” was to come. (AFP)

Iran warned on Wednesday it would hit U.S. and Israeli targets if it were attacked by the United States after President Donald Trump’s security adviser said Washington would exert maximum pressure on Tehran going beyond economic sanctions. (Reuters)

Saudi Arabia’s public prosecutor has reportedly sought the death penalty for five activists, including the female rights defender Israa al-Ghomgham. (BBC)

German police on Wednesday detained a Russian man suspected of planning a bomb attack in Germany after turning to radical Islam, prosecutors said. (Reuters)

Donald Trump accused his former lawyer Michael Cohen Wednesday of making up “stories” to cut a plea deal, after the longtime fixer implicated him in campaign finance violations on perhaps the worst day of his tumultuous presidency.  (AFP)

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